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3 Tips to Successfully Onboard New Employees

July 7, 2017
Written by Rachel Alexander

Did you know on average a person changes jobs 12 times in their career lifetime? Why people are moving jobs more frequently can be for many reasons both personally and professionally, but is it evident that companies are needing to hire more and more frequently. As someone who recently moved into a new role at a new company, I have had some time to think about what it takes to successfully onboard new employees.

As new employees join your team, one critical component to help them prepare for their new role, as well as to help them engage with your company is through the onboarding process. Onboarding sessions encompass trainings, exercises, involvement from departments, amongst other things. However, one thing is abundantly clear with any onboarding program: new employees will have lots and lots of information thrown at them all at once, you know the phrase – drinking from a firehose. So how do those conducting the onboarding know which information is the most recent and up-to-date and how can they ensure those employees are set up for success? Here are three tips we think are critical and how knowledge management plays a significant role in that success.

 

Create A Knowledge Base That Is Organized And Easily Searchable

 

Organizing and sharing information may seem like a simple problem, but it is actually it is very complex. And what makes it even harder’? Versioning. How many times have you emailed a subject matter expert for the latest version or searched through folders to find the right one? As a leader trying to onboard a new team member, you don’t have the time, and you don’t want to waste the time of your new employees trying to find information. By improving human resources practices, creating processes and democratizing knowledge with the right tools, you’re able to break down those information silos so your team can spend less time searching and more time engaging.

Don’t Let New Hires Feel Like They Are Drinking From A Firehose

Bombarding new hires with information seems like the norm, but it doesn’t have to be. People work and comprehend information differently. Let your new hires be their own teachers. Knowledge management creates a community where this is possible. Obviously, it is important to cover critical company information during onboarding sessions, but there is a good chance they are going to forget everything you tell them. Structure your onboarding include only essential elements and then give them the tools they need to go back and review what they learned whenever they need to. Not only does this lessen the stress for you as the onboarding leader, but it also encourages employees to be self-sufficient.

Encourage New Hires To Ask Questions

Starting a new job is probably one of the most exciting and nerve-wracking times you’ll experience (or is that just me?). To help support the tip provided above, when you enable employees to be self-sufficient and learn on their own, with the aid of knowledge management, there is a good chance they will be more open to asking questions. And it’s important that you encourage the asking of questions. Not only could it help with getting new hires ramped up in a more timely manner (average tends to be 3-6 months), it gets them to interact with other employees across multiple departments and breaks down communication barriers right off the bat.

Onboarding doesn’t have to be hours filling out paperwork and going through hundreds of PowerPoint slides. By leveraging the right tools and these tips above, you’re already setting your new hires up for success and driving change, while improving human resources practices at the same time.

Harness The Power Of Knowledge Sharing With Digital Transformation

Companies that grasp what the digital workplace is really all about are willing to change the ways people and applications connect across their organizations. By fostering a digitally driven culture of collaboration, they break down silos, share knowledge more effectively, and compete more successfully.

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